Why does the other child feel inferior?

Why this topic? Well, this topic has been right in front of our eyes and we still choose to ignore, not because we don’t care. However, as parents we always love all our kids equally. Yes, kids take a long time to realize this. Sometimes, a couple of years and other times even decades. We cannot blame them, they are just kids.

A person’s psychology tends to develop during their early childhood days. They rationalize every minute aspect and tend to overthink. This then turns into a habit resulting in many issues in the early and sometimes, even late adulthood. There are many incidents which parents don’t even bother to take a second look that creates a sense of inferiority and insecurity in children. This phenomenon has a compound effect on the kid’s mind, and they start to feel neglected, ignored and not-so-important.

The “other kid” is not necessarily the second child or the oldest one. The “other child” is the smarter, fiercer and stronger one who doesn’t require much parent’s help but requires their emotional support. So, obviously, parents tend to favour the weaker one who is more reliable, afraid and sometimes, even a slow learner. This lack of emotional support either makes the kid feel insecure or else teaches him/her the importance of self-reliance.

The other instance when a kid feels insecure is when his/her sibling is favoured more by parents and other family members. This makes the kid feel neglected and not important. However, there is no specific reason for favouritism. This favouritism results in the kid losing his/her self-esteem and develops an inferiority complex. Where, the kid feels like anything he/she does is not good enough and not worthy of praise. Although, this conditioning has a positive effect in the long term, where the kid does not expect anything from anyone and just keeps on working.

When your kid wins a medal for himself or the team, he/she is very excited to present it to you. An achievement that marks a milestone in their life. This milestone becomes a curse when the parents ignore their talk for any reason, perhaps, the workload is too much, some sad news is received or there is just mental and/or physical exhaustion. When a child’s talks are ignored, it gives them a minute feeling of being unimportant in the parents’ life, which is not at all true. The only important thing in a parent’s life is their children. However, kids are too young to understand it. So, they develop a habit of keeping things to themselves; be it their achievement or something that is bothering them. They often fail to share and turn to their best friends, who are of generally of the same age. This makes them trust their best friends more than their parents.

The next instance can be explained better with the help of a hypothetical situation: You went out for shopping with your family to purchase their festive clothing. Two children and both need to purchase a couple of pairs for the 3-day long festival. The first kid looks spectacular in everything he/she tries. So, you decide to buy more than required. However, the collection is limited for the second kid and you end up buying one pair less than decided. The second kid doesn’t understand that parents won’t allow their kid to wear something that doesn’t suit them or is currently out of fashion. These minute details are not observed by kids that the clothes won’t suit them or it better to buy good clothes. All they observe is the thing in front of them: My parents bought more pair of clothes for my sibling. This incident plants a seed of inferior being in their mind and the rest start to germinate them, before the kids or parents realize, the seed has already grown into a tree.

Although there are some positive after effects of feeling inferior, kids tend to be self-reliant from a young age. They often tend to grow mentally at an early age. Maturity hits soon and the concept of parents is just another relationship they must take care of. In fact, kids love to take care of. A wildfire ensues in the “other kid” that either makes them passionate or turns into a rebel. For both the characteristics somewhere, parents are responsible. So, take a note yourself as a parent and try to work it out. Being a parent is not always about getting things for your kids, sometimes, it also requires sitting and listen.

Author Bio: EZ Life is an online shop in India. EZ life deals in contemporary goods like double wall glasses, fancy home décor, travel essentials and baby products that make it a ‘one-stop shop’ for the entire family.

Rakhi Jayashankar

About Rakhi Jayashankar

Blogger, Holistic Wellness Coach, Social Entrepreneur, Nutritionist, Healer


  1. Thank you for sharing these insights of children!

  2. Mmmm…I’m a victim of this. Mom, dad all they care about is the well being of my siblings leaving me to find myself.
    Although I’ve lt has helped me in being independent, it has also made me negative minded. In that I don’t think anyone can do anything for me, I feel people would not be able to please me and worst, I feel I’m cool on my own so I don’t make friends… No matter how good you are to me.

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